Get the Most Value From Users with Continuous Onboarding

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Get the Most Value From Your Users with Continuous Onboarding

John Ozuysal
January 5, 2021
7 min read

I know you’ve heard the saying: first impressions are important.

And I’ll sound lame saying this, but I couldn’t agree more!

Every product I’ve used, every platform I tried to adopt, every video game I played, and every business I became a part of— what determined whether I would stay was their first impression on me, which is established through user onboarding.

What is User Onboarding?

User onboarding is the most important part of a user’s journey, the part where they are introduced to your product and they make the decision to continue with your business… or not.

You are familiar with walkthrough videos on products, hours of introduction sessions to platforms, and mostly boring tutorials in video games; they are all meant to onboard you to the product.

But what happens once a customer or employee completes the onboarding process? When they have done all the tasks on the onboarding checklist and have reached their “Aha!” moment? Should it stop there? No way!

User onboarding must be an ongoing task for every business in order to increase retention and eliminate churn. 

Which brings us to the question:

What is Continuous User Onboarding?

Continuous User Onboarding refers to not ending the onboarding of a user after their initial “Aha!” moment, but to continue it throughout their lifetime.

After your users are successfully onboarded for the first time and become a fan of your business, whether they are employees or customers, they may not stay that way forever. The great relationship each have with your business will diminish over time.

This is where continuous onboarding rushes to your aid. By onboarding your users again and again, you keep them at their success status as a fan.

The aim is to assist users to repeatedly find new value within your offering. A successful onboarding process helps users advance further by revealing what is more beneficial for them.

Promoting new features for an existing user is a great example, as you will be able to encourage them to achieve more with your product.

Why Should Your Onboarding Be Non-Stop?

Onboarding illustration

Onboarding is not a task that can be accomplished just with a pretty-looking interface design or an interactive product walkthrough.

You need to be there for your users each time they are in need and put forward the next cool feature to increase the value of your product. Your onboarding should never stop mainly because of one single reason: to increase the Lifetime Value.

An increase in the Lifetime Value can be seen via changes in 4 other metrics.

Increase Product Adoption

As your users reach success through onboarding, they will increasingly enjoy the experience you offer.

Each time they complete a task, they will like your platform more.

Also, as they learn your product well and add it to their arsenal, your product will become indispensable.

Therefore, non-stop onboarding after the initial onboarding process will boost your product adoption rate.

Improve Your Retention Rates

Keeping your users happy will help you to improve your retention rate as well.

As your users adopt your product and achieve success without experiencing errors or examples of bad UX, they will come back for more!

Encourage Upsells and Expansions

How can you earn more from customers?

In order to acquire a considerable amount of increase in revenue by upsells and expansion, you have to sell more than the product your users have already bought/subscribed to.

If you keep successfully onboarding users, they won’t hesitate to buy more products and features from you.

Eliminate Churn

Churn Rate

91% percent of users will churn rather than trying to fix their problems with your business.

They will choose the easy-way-out strategy over waiting for you to fix their problems. This is highly dangerous for every business— your inability to decrease churn can signal the end of your success.

Therefore, it’s best to act before your users churn. You can always evaluate the data from your onboarding processes and come up with a solution to the problems they are experiencing or improve your onboarding process overall.

How Continuous Onboarding Can Be Applied to your Business

So now we know what it means to onboard users continuously and why you should adopt such a method, we need to learn how.

I have come up with three ways to apply continuous user onboarding to your business right now:

1. Be There When They Need You

You have to be there when they need you!

a. When they want to reach out to you for help

So a user of yours is stuck with your product, doesn’t know what to do and requests help.

This is the biggest chance to onboard a user once again. They are far from the path to customer success they need to be on and you need to onboard them again onto this path.

What you should do in this case is to offer self-help centers, conversation portals, and interactive guides so they can easily solve their problems by themselves.  

b. When they don’t know they need you, but they do

The other case is, you might be sure of the stage of their journey your users will struggle with and help them once they get to that stage.

customer retention graphic

Some of the good user onboarding or CRM tools help you establish action-based processes so that you can keep contacting the user at the right place and time throughout the user lifecycle.

In these cases, you can identify and fix the pain points of the users related to the product or you can make sure they have what they need when they need it.

2. Highlight Features and Updates

Highlighting a new feature or the latest update is a must-do for all SaaS and other businesses.

To increase user engagement and improve feature adoption, you have to set guides or checklists that help users explore the brand new iteration of your new product.

3. Offer Valuable Content

Along with helping your users explore the value of your product over and over again, you can try to provide them with additional value.

This value may range from an article related to your audience’s interests to a detailed guide on how they can use your product or service more efficiently.


You can’t ignore the fact that user onboarding never ends, so what will you do about it?

If you keep offering value throughout a user’s journey, they will be onboarded again and again, until they become promoters of your platform and stay for the long haul.

John Ozuysal

John Ozuysal

John Ozuysal is the Head of Growth at UserGuiding, a code-free product walkthrough software that 2000+ teams trust with their user onboarding.